Sundance London: Interviews with the directors of Past Lives, Scrapper and Fantastic Machine
Sundance London is always such a delight: a carefully curated, killer lineup of some of the best of Sundance, shown to a curious and enthusiastic audience in an intimate and friendly atmosphere at the city’s Picturehouse Central. This tenth edition was no exception.
The Upcoming had the chance to chat with some of this year’s talent during a special breakfast, which included the filmmakers of Invisible Beauty, Scrapper, Past Lives, Mutt, You Hurt My Feelings, Fairyland, Going Varsity in Mariachi and Fantastic Machine.
Writer and director Celine Song spoke about her feature debut, Past Lives, which won the Audience Award (as well as five stars from The Upcoming) and will be released in UK cinemas on 8th September this year. It tells a contemporary love story, spanning decades of time and continents of space. Two childhood friends, Nora and Hae Sung, are pulled apart after Nora’s family emigrates from South Korea when she is still young. While they reconnect online as adults, it’s not until two decades later they are reunited in person in New York and forced to confront their feelings and sense of who they are. Song shared how she made the move from theatre playwright to film director, the inspiration behind her love story, and what it means to her that so many people have connected with her characters, whose tale is both specific and universal.
We also chatted with Charlotte Regan on her heartwarming and delightful Scrapper, whose premiere opened the festival. Regan told us how she doesn’t see filmmaking as a job but a joy, and that is what infuses her approach to storytelling and working with her cast and creatives on-set. She further spoke about casting young newcomer Lola Campbell as her protagonist opposite screen star Harris Dickinson to bring to life her quirky tale of a father-daughter relationship that is reignited in the wake of the death of 12-year-old Georgie’s mother. Watch our interviews on the red carpet here.
Axel Danielson then stopped to chat about fascinating documentary Fantastic Machine, a film that ponders on the form of cinema itself – with the camera being the titular “fantastic machine” – looking at the power of the image through time, as well as the risk of that power being abused, particularly in a day and age where video images are so pervasive in our lives. Read our review here.
For further information about Sundance London 2023 visit here.
Read our reviews and interviews from the festival here.